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Will the show go on? AZ arts orgs plan for survival (access required)

Caught in what could be described as a perfect storm, the Arizona arts community is struggling to stay afloat. Hit by reductions in public funding, cutbacks by corporate donors and a skittish audience that is staying home, arts advocates nevertheless are following that long-standing tradition - the show must go on.

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Midyear property tax repeal a potential ‘nightmare’ for counties (access required)

Legislative Republicans may have to reconcile themselves to at least one year of the state equalization property tax. It would be theoretically possible to repeal the tax retroactively during the next legislative session, so that property owners would be reimbursed for the taxes already paid under the equalization rate. But any lawmaker hoping to do so can expect fierce opposition from county treasurers.

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Billion-dollar deficits to plague Ariz. through 2013 (access required)

Most states are swimming in red ink, but Arizona is on the verge of drowning in it. Federal stimulus dollars intended to prop up government revenues and help states weather the economic storm have been spent, and the Grand Canyon State is facing deficits that could reach $3 billion in each of the next three years.

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Lawmakers from both parties criticize Brewer’s budget action (access required)

The governor’s actions on the state budget drew jeers from both Republicans and Democrats, but for wildly different reasons. House Speaker Kirk Adams and Senate President Bob Burns, both Republicans, said Gov. Jan Brewer increased state spending by more than $350 million with her line-item-vetoes of cuts to K-12 education and the Department of Economic Security, which provides benefits for Arizona’s poor.

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Brewer vetoes part of budget, blames ‘extremists’ from both parties (access required)

Blaming “extremists” from both parties for holding up the budget process and threatening the state with bankruptcy, Gov. Jan Brewer on Sept. 4 signed large swaths of the budget that she said will help the state “weather the storm” until the next legislative session. But she vetoed parts of the main spending bill, including $300 million in cuts to K-12 schools and DES. She also vetoed the bill that included the equalization property tax.

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